The BAe Sea Harrier FRS1 first entered service with the Royal Navy in April 1980. The
aircraft is a naval VTOL/VSTOL jet fighter designed for reconnaissance and attack roles. In
1993 an improved variant of the Sea Harrier was produced as the FA.2 with a more
powerful engine, improved air-to-air capabilities and weapons options. The FA.2 was
produced until 1998 and continued in service until 2006 when it was replaced by the
Harrier GR9. 56 FA.2 Sea Harriers were produced for the Royal Navy.
To mark the No. 899 Squadron’s 25 years equipped with the Sea Harrier ZH809 was given
a special paint scheme. The color was supposed to be Dark Sea Gray but it wasn’t
available but Roundel Blue was and ZH809 was named “The Admiral’s Barge” and became
the star at air shows. ZH809 joined the Fleet Air Arm in 1998 and withdrawn from service in
2006 with only 1,073 flying hours. The aircraft went to Culdrose to train flight deck crews
and eventually went to a museum in Athens Greece.